How to avoid pain while gardening | stretches & warm-ups

Hi, my name is Gargi, I’m a physiotherapist
at the MSK Program at the Holland Centre. And Hi, I’m Andrea, I’m also a physiotherapist
at the Holland Centre. This is the time of year when it’s getting
warmer and one of things that we like to do is to get out there and garden. And so what we wanted to do today is give
you some tips on how to use proper body mechanics to protect yourself when you are out there
gardening Definitely it’s important to stretch, so
focusing on wrist stretches as we’re going to be using our hands quite a bit. Holding
the stretches for about 10 to 20 seconds is good enough. Focusing on stretching the chest
muscles, as well as the upper back muscles. Good stretches. Focusing on the back, putting
the bands on the buttock, and focusing on an extension. As well, we can focus on the
legs, quadriceps, hamstrings. back of the thigh, and calf muscles. You’re going to do a lot of bending when
you’re gardening and you want to do the bending from the hips rather than from your
waist. Andrea is going to demonstrate for us, that
when we’re lifting bags of soil or heavy things like tress, you want to use your legs,
and keep the weight nice and close to your body. Andrea’s going to show us her best squat.
Most of us, we sometimes bend like this. This is the wrong position – bending from the
back. What we need to do is to focus on the hips, squatting back and being in a position
like so – my back is straight. I’m getting ready to lift this bag of soil. At the same you want to remember that you’re
tightening your abdominal muscles as you’re lifting, so you want to brace you’re abdominal
muscles tightening them all up as you go to lift. If you’ve got knee or back problems and
you’re working in close to the ground – like weeding — the best thing to do is to use
a low stool. This is better than squatting or kneeling. As you can see, you can keep a better position
when you’re sitting on a stool. You can keep your back in a neutral position, and
you can again, as we said before, bend from your hips, rather than from your back. You can see, that if we don’t use the stool,
you’re really putting your back in a compromised position. And being in this kind of position,
can lead to back pain, or knee pain. If your knees will allow, another good position
to garden in is, in kneeling…. put a pad at the knees —And this allows your knees
to be comfortable, and for your whole body to stay in a neutral position. Alternatively, you can kneel with one knee
at a time. So, Andrea is going to show us to do that. So you’re almost in a lunge
position as you’re doing this. And this again can keep you in a nice alignment and
you can garden in this way, protecting your back. You can also alternate your feet as
you ‘re doing this, to change positions frequently. And happy gardening! Keep your back, and your
flowers in good condition!

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